Acta Physiologiae Plantarum

, 37:203 | Cite as

Salt priming improved salt tolerance in sweet sorghum by enhancing osmotic resistance and reducing root Na+ uptake

  • Kun Yan
  • Hualing Xu
  • Wei Cao
  • Xiaobing Chen
Original Article


This study attempted to explore how salt priming affected salt tolerance in sweet sorghum with emphasis on root Na+ uptake. After 10 days of pretreatment with 150 mM NaCl, plants were stressed with 300 mM NaCl. After salt stress for 7 days, dry matter of root and shoot decreased by 58.7 and 69.7 % in non-pretreated plants and by 37.9 and 41.3 % in pretreated plants. Consistently, pretreated plants maintained higher photosynthetic rate during salt stress, suggesting the enhanced tolerance by salt priming. Salt priming enhanced osmotic resistance, as proline and relative water contents in the leaf were higher in pretreated plants under salt stress. Salt priming alleviated salt-induced oxidative damage not by improving antioxidant protection due to lower increase in leaf malondialdehyde content and no extra induction on ascorbate peroxidase, catalase, superoxide dismutase, ascorbic acid and reduced glutathione in pretreated plants. After 7 days of salt stress, root Na+ efflux increased by 8.5- and 3.9-folds in pretreated and non-pretreated plants, suggesting that salt priming reduced root Na+ uptake, and then root and leaf Na+ accumulation were mitigated in pretreated plants. However, root Na+ extrusion became indifferent between pretreated and non-pretreated plants under salt stress after inhibiting plasma membrane (PM) Na+/H+ antiporter. Thus, the greater Na+ extrusion induced by salt priming had relation to PM Na+/H+ antiporter. Overall, salt priming improved salt tolerance in sweet sorghum by enhancing osmotic resistance and reducing root Na+ uptake.


Antioxidant Osmotic adjustment Photosynthesis Root Na+ extrusion Salt pretreatment 



Ascorbate peroxidase


Ascorbic acid




Intercellular CO2 concentration


Stomatal conductance


The maximum photochemical efficiency of PSII






Non-invasive micro-test technique


Photosynthetic rate


Plasma membrane


Photosystem II


Reactive oxygen species


Superoxide dismutase



This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41201292).


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Copyright information

© Franciszek Górski Institute of Plant Physiology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kraków 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes and Ecological Remediation, Yantai Institute of Coastal Zone Research (YIC), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS)YantaiChina
  2. 2.Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Coastal Environmental Processes, YICCASYantaiChina
  3. 3.Dongying Academy of Agricultural SciencesDongyingChina
  4. 4.Bureau of Education and SportYantaiChina

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